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Billings Skyview seniors to join National Guard after graduation

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Posted at 5:57 PM, May 24, 2022
and last updated 2022-05-24 21:06:21-04

BILLINGS — Two Billings Skyview High School seniors are turning in their softball caps for military berets. While they’re talented athletes, these young women chose service over sports.

It’s not every day that two high school seniors are honored by the Army National Guard.

“It’s neat that we got to do that,” said Skyview senior, Piper Chartier, Tuesday.

Chartier and Mackinzy Ruff received that honor this past weekend at their Senior Day at Skyview High. The pair will graduate on May 29.

“I’m pretty optimistic right now. I’m just ready to go, I’m ready to get things going to see where life takes me,” said Ruff.

These two softball players are leaving the game they love behind.

"It’s just been my life, my best friend for the last 13 years,” said Ruff.

They’re both joining the National Guard.

“Army Combat Medic is going to be my military job,” said Chartier.

Chartier will be going through the ROTC program at Montana State University where she’ll join her older sister, Skylar, who’s also in ROTC.

“I’m kind of excited to have another, another little Chartier hanging around, I’m kind of excited,” said Skylar Chartier.

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Especially since she’s watched both girls grow up since they were kids.

“Being the older sister, like always coming to all their events and stuff. Seeing them make that decision has been super cool,” Skylar Chartier said.

Piper says her sister inspired her. She turned down softball scholarship offers to follow in Skylar’s footsteps.

“I mean I watched her do it, so I always knew it was a good option,” said Piper Chartier.

Meanwhile, Ruff will become a transportation specialist after advanced individual training.

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“I’ll learn how to drive all the bigger vehicles and help transport things depending on what it is they need,” said Ruff.

Both girls worry that basic training will be tough.

“I’m kind of nervous for training though,” said Piper Chartier.

However, they both know the benefits outweigh those few months of hardship.

“Why not, why not do this? It sounds fun, it sounds like I’m going to have a blast,” Ruff said.

Trading in their softball cleats for combat boots and making their community proud.

“It’s sad to think about all the things I’m going to be leaving but I’ve been planning for everything for so long,” said Piper Chartier.